Yesterday was Halloween, a holiday where horror is encouraged and candy is spread among kids across the country. Rap fanatics were also given some ear candy one year ago, when 21 Savage, Offset, and Metro Boomin dropped "Without Warning" as a Halloween special. This album dropped literally without warning, as it came out of nowhere but was enjoyed by many. Metro Boomin has a knack for making murky, dark and violent beats, and 21 Savage and Offset are two rappers that perfectly fit those type of beats. With Metro Boomin dropping a project on Friday and 21 Savage and Offset releasing separate projects before the end of 2018, let's revisit "Without Warning" and look back at its' brightest moments.
This project did not have many features, but both of them did a great job in their songs. The album opens up with "Ghostface Killers" where Offset shines in his verse, 21 delivers in a mumbling flow and Travis Scott comes in with a great feature. "Rap Saved Me" has one of the most unique and creative sounds I've heard, almost like an electric chainsaw, but it's easily one of my favorite tracks on the album and one of the most electrifying beats I've ever heard. 21 Savage's lazy flow works well in his verse and chorus, Offset delivers another good verse, and Quavo delivers on a short verse, as his auto-tuned voice adds another element to the beat. Next is the hit single "Ric Flair Drip" which has only Offset on it but is regarded as the most popular track from the album. He destroys Metro's beat and delivers two incredible verses, staying in his lane throughout.
The fourth track is "My Choppa Hate N*ggas", where 21 Savage solely tears into another grimy offering from Metro Boomin and delivers two good verses and a chorus that can come off as both corny and funny. Personally, the opening of "I can show you how to fit a M in a duffel" gets me hyped every listen. One of the most underrated parts of the project is the transition between this track and "Nightmare", the fifth track, and if you didn't see the track list you would probably think it's the same song with a beat switch. Offset takes over again on "Nightmare", referencing Freddy Kruger and giving another incredible verse to listeners, with lines like "Open your eyes today/ I got the Mac today/ Pay or get whacked today/ Pull up in Cats and Wraiths". This brings us to the sixth track, "Mad Stalkers", with another car-rattling and disgusting beat that is carved up by Offset and 21 Savage. The chorus is a bit repetitive, but it is still catchy.
The final four tracks aren't as impressive as the previous ones, but "Disrespectful" has one of the best 21 Savage verses on the project and another great Offset verse. "Run Up The Racks" and "Still Serving" are forgettable for the most part, but each still have bright spots. The final track, "Darth Vader" is a great ending to the album, with Offset shining once again and 21 Savage actually shows some emotion on the finale with this line: "My dog lost his life and it changed me/ I'm poppin' percocets 'cause the pain deep". Below is my personal rating for each track on "Without Warning".
1. "Ghostface Killers"- 10/10
2. "Rap Saved Me"- 10/10
3. "Ric Flair Drip"- 9/10
4. "My Choppa Hate N*ggas"- 8/10
5. "Nightmare"- 8/10
6. "Mad Stalkers"- 9/10
7. "Disrespectful"- 8/10
8. "Run Up The Racks"- 7/10
9. "Still Serving"- 6/10
10. "Darth Vader"- 8/10
For a collab album, 10 tracks is the perfect length for this trio and this album shows all three of them at their best. Metro Boomin continued to have a dominant 2017 with some of his best work yet, producing 10 dark and deep bangers that are great for any car ride. The production on the album is incredible and Metro Boomin deserves a ton of credit for the success of this project. Offset proved that he is able to hold his own and can single-handily dominate on a track like he did in "Nightmare" and "Ric Flair Drip". As for 21 Savage, his connection with Metro is dynamic as this is their second project together (The first being 2016's Savage Mode). He also takes over in tracks like "My Choppa Hate N*ggas" and "Run Up The Racks" and complemented Offset very well. With all three of these releasing new music soon, coming back and listening to this album has me excited for all of these new releases. This was on the best collab albums in recent memory and one of my favorite albums of 2017, as my personal rating for "Without Warning" is an 8.3. You can listen to the album in it's entirety below.
FINAL RATING: 8.3/10
FAVORITE TRACKS: "Ghostface Killers" feat. Travis Scott, "Rap Saved Me" feat. Quavo, "Mad Stalkers", "Ric Flair Drip"